New Ministries – Not a Big Help For AP

The announcement of cabinet portfolios by the new coalition government led by NDA and its allies after Narendra Modi and his Council of Ministers took oath came as a huge disappointment to the people of Andhra Pradesh because no significant ministry has been allotted to the MPs representing the state. It is a known fact three MPs from AP made the cut in Modi’s cabinet this time. Unfortunately, none of the ministries have the potential to foster the state’s development. 

Srikakulam MP Ram Mohan Naidu, who is the youngest minister in the central cabinet, has been allotted Civil Aviation Ministry, a portfolio which was previously held by seasoned TDP leader Ashok Gajapati Raju during 2014 – 2018. When a young and dynamic MP like Ram Mohan Naidu was chosen for cabinet berth, many expected that he might be given a notable portfolio which could augur well for the development of the state. But, the selection turned out to be a dampener when it was announced that he was given Civil Aviation as most of the airports are already privatised and there would be little impact on the state with this ministry. 

Another MP Pemmasani Chandrasekhar, who is an NRI and won from Guntur parliament, was given Minister of State Rural Development. Though this is a pivotal portfolio, he cannot take independent decisions as he will need to assist cabinet minister Shivaraj Singh Chauhan.  

Besides these two TDP MPs, the Modi government inducted BJP MP Srinivas Varma, who was elected from Narsapuram segment, into the cabinet and nominated as MoS for Heavy Industry and Steel. As the privatization of Vizag steel plant is a foregone conclusion, he might not intervene much in this issue as it was the decision of the central government. Given that he is a BJP MP, Varma will not put pressure on the cabinet minister to rescind the decision. 

Overall, there no are big portfolios to AP Minsters. As TDP-JSP combine turned out to be a the biggest ally for NDA government with 18 MPa, many expected that these parties would have adequate preference in the Modi 3.0 cabinet. At one point, it was widely speculated in National media that Naidu was demanding more than 6 ministries and Speaker post. But, the final announcement of portfolios didn’t please the people of Andhra Pradesh.